FAQs About Personal Chef Service


What is the difference between a personal chef and a private chef?

A private chef is employed by one individual or family full time, and often lives in, preparing up to three meals per day. A personal chef serves several clients, usually one per day, and provides multiple meals that are custom-designed for the clients’ particular requests and requirements. These meals are packaged and stored, so that the client may enjoy them at his or her leisure in the future.

Why should I hire a personal or private chef who is a member of the American Personal & Private Chef Association?

APPCA sets the professional bar high, so those seeking to hire a personal or private chef know that if they hire a member of APPCA, they’re hiring a trained professional. Our chefs have completed rigorous food-safety training.

Does the chef cook in my kitchen?

Chef Debi's meals for her Weekly Meal Service are are prepared in a licensed commercial kitchen and delivered right to your refrigerator. Meals for private parties are prepared in the safety of your own kitchen. On the day of your private party, Chef Debi will bring the fresh ingredients for your meal and prepare your dishes on site. At the end of the evening, Chef Debi will leave your kitchen clean and full of the aroma of good home cooking.

How long will the chef be here?

The chef will likely be cooking several different entrées and side dishes from scratch, so it will probably take several hours. However, your personal chef will typically be most willing to work with your schedule or situation, and make arrangements in advance, so that the cooking date fits into your schedule.

Do I heat the food?

Yes. Any entrées that have been stored for you in your freezer should be defrosted overnight in your refrigerator, and re-heated, to be enjoyed at the peak of their flavor. Your personal chef will leave you with easy to follow heating instructions for each dish.

How much freezer space is needed?

It depends on the number of meals you request, and the sizes of the containers, but it does generally require a considerable amount of freezer space. You and your chef should take a look at your freezer to see just how much room you have available. Efficient storage is one of the reasons many personal chefs prefer to select the storage containers for their clients.

How much is it going to cost?

Although personal-chef fees vary, they typically are expressed per entrée or per serving. The fees actually represent all of the components that make up a professional personal-chef service. For example, the assessment process that a personal chef completes to determine your likes, needs, special dietary requirements and requests is used to customize your menu selections. They modify their recipes to reflect your wants and needs; meal selections are submitted for your approval; all of the groceries needed for your meals are included; and your meals are all prepared in the safety of your own kitchen. Plus, packaging, labeling and storing your entrées are all features included in this price. If you were to compare a personal-chef service to restaurant service you could think of it this way: For a restaurant, you must drive to get there, possibly wait for a table, take a chance that your server is having a good day, and if you have allergies or special requests, you don’t always have the guarantee that they will be honored. After eating your meal you must pay for it, tip the server, and get back in your vehicle to drive home. If you have a personal-chef service, you can heat a beautiful entrée that has been prepared specifically for your palate and requirements, and eat it in the comfort of your own home.

How do I find a personal or private chef?

How do you go about locating the right personal chef for you? Watch the video below from the American Personal & Private Chef Association on how to find a personal chef.